[Loadstone] Perhaps a little OT, but My preliminary impression of WayfinderAccess.

r.jansen r.jansen at wanadoo.nl
Wed Jun 6 12:02:20 BST 2007


Hi Geoff,
 
The heading info given on the Info tab is the compass direction your are
moving to.
The heading info given on the vicinity views are related to your own
direction.

So if the info tab says that you are moving 270 degrees (West), and lets say
that a entry on the vicinity view says: 20 feet, 90 degree, its to your
right after 20 feet, and because you are walking West (270 degree), the
vicinity info is North on the compass (270 + 90). But you don't have to
switch between the info tab and the vicinity views because the compass
direction of the Info tab is not that important.

But, this is a Loadstone list, so ... There will be a WFA list shortly.

Regards,

Raymond

-----Oorspronkelijk bericht-----
Van: loadstone-bounces at loadstone-gps.com
[mailto:loadstone-bounces at loadstone-gps.com] Namens Geoff Waaler
Verzonden: woensdag 6 juni 2007 11:27
Aan: loadstone at loadstone-gps.com
Onderwerp: Re: [Loadstone] Perhaps a little OT,but My preliminary impression
of WayfinderAccess.

Hello Raymond,

Please bare in mind that I was discussing WFA.  More over it was clarified
later in the paragraph you quoted that heading info provided by WFA is *NOT*
relative to one's direction of travel.

Best regards.
Geoff

On Wed, 6 Jun 2007 11:17:00 +0200, r.jansen wrote:

>Hi Geoff,
>
>You said:
>
>> The other negative is that all values are given in degrees relative 
>> to the
>compass, rather than one's own direction of travel.
>
>I think this is incorrect. If it says 0 or 360 degrees its in front of 
>you and 180 degrees is behind.
>
>I will check this to be cirtain.
>
>Regards, Raymond
>
>-----Oorspronkelijk bericht-----
>Van: loadstone-bounces at loadstone-gps.com
>[mailto:loadstone-bounces at loadstone-gps.com] Namens Geoff Waaler
>Verzonden: woensdag 6 juni 2007 10:41
>Aan: loadstone at loadstone-gps.com
>Onderwerp: [Loadstone] Perhaps a little OT,but My preliminary 
>impression of WayfinderAccess.
>
>Greetings,
>
>I posted the following to another list, but decided to cross post it here.
>
>On Monday WayFinder corporation released WayFinder Access nearly three 
>months after the date initially promised in their February product 
>announcement.  The "official" description of WFA is available at 
>http://www.wayfinder.com/products/wayfinder_access.en.php?link_id=subme
>nu_st
>atic
> 
>Bare in mind that running Wayfinder requires a subscription to a cell 
>phone carriers data plan.  There's no room on most phones to store 
>maps, hence the need for access to the net while in use.  I confirmed 
>Neil B of Talknav's pricing info and since WFA is available through his 
>company for $125 less than the regular price until Friday I wanted to 
>share my preliminary observations.
> 
>I can't restrain myself from starting out by commenting on the regular 
>price which is $539.00.  I purchased Wayfinder's over the counter 
>product called WayFinderNavigator for $99 and for my money do not see 
>anything in their access product to account for five and a half times 
>the cost.  Did I mention that Wayfinder offers upgrade pricing to all 
>its other customers, with the exception of Access?  What a great way to 
>reward their loyal customers who have limped along with so many
inaccessible features for years.
> 
>Using the main stream product I can search for businesses either near 
>by or in distant cities.  I can add them to my favorites and compute 
>routes based on current GPS coordinates and receive voice guidance.  
>The routing often does not make sense but is over all helpful.
> 
>I won't mention how as of Monday WayFinderAccess's installation process 
>was inaccessible, but then again I just did, didn't I?  Hmmm, suppose 
>I'm expecting a lot for $539 after a three month wait.  Actually to be 
>fair, that was a gratuitous slam on my part;  I am given to understand 
>that CodeFactory will release an update to their product by the end of 
>the week which renders WayFinder's web pages accessible, and Nuance is 
>expected to do likewise for Talks in the short term.  Fortunately I had 
>a neighbor near by who was willing to disclose which options were 
>highlighted on the phone, but this is often not the case.
> 
>WFA's look feel and interface is  very similar to Navigator, however 
>five text based list views have been added as follows:
>Info: contains current position, heading and GPS status.
>and the next four are vicinity views presenting a list ordered by 
>current proximity which includes:
>all: a blend of the following three.
>crossing: lists intersections.
>favorite: orders distance to items previously added to favorites.
>POI: database of known points of interest.  Categories such as "Rent a 
>car Facility", " restaurant" "ATM", etc may be configured so as not to
appear.
> 
>This is absolutely a great feature.  More over I like the fact that one 
>can now use other features which were inaccessible in the main stream 
>product such as obtaining the phone number for located businesses, and 
>perhaps its a bell and whistle thing, but getting weather conditions is 
>kind of neat.  I wonder whether the free screen reader updates 
>referenced above which are specifically for compatibility with WFA will 
>improve accessibility  to features in WayFinder Navigator?
> 
>From the info tab I can add my own personal points.  I am unable to do 
>that using the main stream product, and of course this capability is a 
>valuable addition.
> 
>Granted this is the initial release and many features will be tweaked 
>or added.  Not sure since WayFinder chose not to offer upgrade pricing 
>initially how much potential improvements will cost WFA customers, but 
>IMHO The present form of its implementation largely renders these list 
>views to a state where they are of marginal utility.
> 
>When you go to one of these list views the proximity and distance are 
>spoken (usually twice) before you hear the name of the point.  The 
>double speaking is attributable to the fact that the list refreshes 
>every couple seconds there by causing Talks or presumably MobileSpeak 
>to reread the line, so I might hear something like the following while in
the crossing view:
>"255 feet, 278 degree Ea ... 235 feet, 264 degree East Franklin Street 
>South Boundary and North Boundary".  By the time it has read two 
>different heading and distance values I've had to wait several seconds 
>before hearing the information I always consider more important; after 
>all what's the value of distance and direction when you don't yet know what
is being referenced?
>Perhaps the updated versions of the phone based screen readers will 
>abate the double reading in lists that are being updated.  I am using a 
>Nokia 6682 which does not have as fast a processor as some of the newer 
>phones, and this too could be a factor.  Hopefully most won't have this 
>duplication because its very annoying.
> 
>The other negative is that all values are given in degrees relative to 
>the compass, rather than one's own direction of travel.  I've looked 
>all through settings and believe I have not missed anything.  So I can 
>walk toward an intersection and WFA reports its direction in degrees.  
>When I turn around and walk away I receive identical directional 
>information, though of course the distance will begin to increase.
> 
>This won't be a problem for those who have an instant protractor in 
>their heads, but even then this implementation is kind of dubious 
>compared to directional feedback from other accessible GPS solutions.  
>Lets say I want to ascertain my distance from a POI that's in WFA's 
>database.  After hearing the line twice and listening through all the 
>degree and distance info I finally hear the name of the place.  I then 
>have to recall its direction which is some number between zero and 360.  
>Lets pull a number out of the air like 227 degrees.  Okay, now I must 
>keep that number in my brain and press left arrow four times to the 
>info tab.  After saying "loading ..." I can then down arrow twice to 
>obtain my heading.  lets pull another number out of our hats and say 
>310 degrees (on some streets this varies up to 90 degrees and is 
>literally all over the map -- curious how you can feel it while 
>driving, but the curves are gradual hence I don't notice most of them 
>while walking).  Anyway, did you recall where that desired POI was?  
>After all those key presses I kinda forgot myself, but okay, so we have 
>227 degrees as our target, and a baring of 310, which I believe puts it 
>on our left, unless the street curved again.  Am I getting closer or 
>further?  Hmm, suppose I'd better press right arrow four times and 
>locate that place again and hopefully I remembered its distance from 
>before.  To be sure there are constraints involved with phone software, but
to me this interface/output is not very efficient compared to other
solutions.
> 
>Unless I learn within the next day or two that I missed a few things, 
>my intention is to stick with what I have for now.  A free Symbian 
>based GPS phone application called loadstone is available from 
>http://www.loadstone-gps.com which does an excellent job with all the 
>basics.  Loadstone's downside is that the POIS are exclusively of the 
>"do it yourself" variety.  You can mark your own or download free data 
>from the net (which is very limited).  To fill in when I want to locate 
>near by businesses I'll continue using WayfinderNavigator.  I would 
>have been more than willing to reward WayFinder for developing an 
>accessible version however from what I've seen the initial pricing of 
>four times that of their main stream product was outrageous enough 
>IMHO, and now its been increased to almost 5.5 times that of Navigator?  I
don't think so!!
> 
>Best regards.
>Geoff

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